Post by Steven Dale
One of the things we often talk about around these parts is the public outreach and marketing aspect of public transportation and how it so often falls short of being effective. A few personal favourites:
I once even suggested without a hint of sarcasm that we might even be able to spur transportation ridership simply by engaging Hollywood to make movies that flatter public transportation and make it look cool.
But generally speaking those are higher level concerns that don’t tend to deal with the most rudimentary of marketing techniques: The advertisement.
For the life of me, I can’t actually think of a billboard, sign or commercial promoting public transportation that actually captivates my attention; makes me smile, laugh and feel good about myself; and actively makes me want to support and use public transit. If anyone knows of one, please post it in the comments because I’m drawing a blank. And remember: I say that as a lifetime non-driver and public transportation user.
And then our own Julia Padvoiskis sends me a link to a Norwegian bus commercial that defies everything I just said and is just about the most wonderful transportation commercial I’ve ever seen.
Now before we go any further, I should mention that 4 seconds of the commercial contains (starting at the 1:46 mark) mild nudity and sexual content that may be considered offensive by some and should be treated as NSFW. As such, while I’d prefer to embed the video directly on this page, I understand certain people may not be amused by the offending parts of the video particularly as public transportation tends to be administered by public government agencies.
Nevertheless, the video is incredibly charming, sexy, heart-warming and does everything a good advertisement for public transportation should – namely, it makes one want to ride it now.
After you’ve viewed it, please come back to us to discuss your thoughts about the commercial; how it made you feel and think about public transportation; and if you think the 4 seconds in question took things a little too far.
I’d genuinely love to hear people’s thoughts on this.
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